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It’s NOT All About the Numbers.

Too often clients ask me, “ how can I get more fans on my page?” They think, as most do, that Facebook fan page success is all about the numbers. Not so. Facebook, and social media in general, is all about engagement, not numbers. If you have thousands of fans who don’t care about your products and services you might as well be putting your money and time into newspaper ads. But, if you have a small handful of loyal customers who interact with your content regularly and spread good news about your business across social media channels, then you have success; the kind that translates into a positive bottom line.
So, don’t ask your social media consultant how to increase the numbers, ask how to increase engagement because when you get that working for you, the numbers take care of themselves.
2 Quick and Easy Ways to Increase Engagement:
1) Know your audience. On Facebook the ‘Page Insights’ will show you your page demographic; make sure your posts are relevant to them.
2) Ask questions. Design your posts to be inquiries. Ask your audience what they like, what they do, how they handle different situations, etc. Answers, in the form of comments and likes, are engagement.

More engagement strategies to come…..


5 Point Plan to Get You Up and Running with Social Media

Your social media strategy needn’t take a month to define.  Follow these simple steps and you can be producing relevant, engaging content in just days.  [tweetmeme source=”alisonstoodley” only_single=false]Your strategy should reflect your company’s needs and it doesn’t have to be like anyone else’s. Testing and tweaking are big parts of the process so don’t expect to accomplish your goals without them.  Finally, if you don’t have time to do social media effectively, hire someone to train you, or to manage it for you or don’t do it at all because what you don’t say with your social media says just as much about your company as what you do.

  1. Decide what you want to accomplish with social media
  2. Research to determine which social media tools will do the job – Google is your friend
  3. Implement one at a time, becoming used to each one before adding another
  4. Determine the best way to measure your results depending on the tools you are using – see #2
  5. Tweak and test until the results you achieve are in line with your goals.

Time Management?

The most frequent complaint I hear from people when I ask them why they haven’t kept up on their social media is that they ‘don’t have time.’

[tweetmeme source=”alisonstoodley” only_single=false]

Now, as a business person and a single mom I get that – time is a very valuable commodity.  But then again, so is your business and if your business depends on word of mouth, then so is your social media presence.

If you are one of the time challenged many try looking at it from a different perspective.  Time, as it turns out, cannot be managed  it’s coming and going whether you get your stuff together or not, but commitments can be managed and looking at yours with a critical eye for results might shine a light on pockets of available time you may have overlooked.

When it comes to your social media commitments make sure that where you are spending your time is where it will pay off and whittle back your commitment until it is manageable. Posting regularly to one medium is much better than not posting at all to five.

The Social Media Privacy Myth…

Lately friends and fans alike have been up in arms regarding the latest privacy changes, (or some would say, violations) to our Facebook accounts.  In a nutshell Facebook has opted everyone in to share their personal details with its [tweetmeme source=”alisonstoodley” only_single=false]partner sites. So this means that when we visit these sites, CNN, Yelp and Pandora to name a few, we will find an internet experience tailored to our preferences. Unless of course, we navigate the maze of privacy settings to opt ourselves out and even then one can’t be sure their details are protected, which brings me to my point.

If you are one of those who is crazed by Facebook‘s ‘anti-privacy’ privacy policy take note: Anything you voluntarily share on the internet is no longer private. Keep this in mind every time you sign up for a new site, get a new email, or even purchase something. The details you share have the possibility of being compromised, no matter how secure or private a site claims to be. If you are uncomfortable with that govern yourself accordingly.

Think about it, your credit card details are vulnerable to any store clerk  yet you still use it when you shop.  In most cases using a simple business card  I can find out just about anything I want about anyone but that doesn’t keep people from sharing them. In my opinion we have all gotten a little paranoid when it comes to online privacy. Facebook isn’t trying to hack your bank account  (unless you include placing things in front of you that you might actually want to buy) or camp out in front of your house with a set of binoculars, they are merely trying to take advantage of the information you have provided to become more profitable and possible enhance your online experience. Yes, this may come with a few risks but they are no more than allowing that waitress a glimpse at your Visa number.

If you prefer to keep yourself private then you really have no place on Facebook or any other social media site and if you want to limit the details you share then don’t provide them to any site in the first place. That way we will be taking responsibility for our personal information and our privacy and we can all stop blaming Facebook for simply working with what we have given them.

5 things You Need to Know About Your Social Media Presence:

  1. Patience is key.  When you are first setting out on your social media(SM) journey it will take time to garner [tweetmeme source=”alisonstoodley” only_single=false] an interested audience. Don’t give up if you don’t get comments or feedback in the first few months, just have some patience and your efforts will be rewarded.
  2. It is better to be consistent than not. If you are not willing to schedule your SM into your calendar then it is probably best you don’t bother. An inconsistent effort says something about you in SM land – and whether it is true or not will not matter. Be consistent or go home.
  3. Offer value. If you are consistently trying to sell your audience they will switch you off. And don’t tease them with “call me to get the info” posts, give them the info in the post, if they deem it of value they will call you.
  4. Let your voice come through.  If you are naturally funny let that come out, your audience will appreciate the authenticity.
  5. Negativity is an opportunity. If someone posts a negative comment take the opportunity to show your audience how you tackle complicated situations. Rise to the occasion and show your audience the excellent problem solver you are. Don’t shy away or become defensive, you will appear childish and evasive and no one wants to do business with those qualities.

Why your business needs an email newsletter.

If you’re reading this you are probably aware of the changes in effective marketing techniques that are emerging on [tweetmeme source= ‘alisonstoodley’ only_single=false]  a daily basis.  You probably already  have yourself a Facebook fan page, a Twitter account and are a profile on Linkedin. (If not, what are you waiting for?) With this foray into the world of social media don’t forget a very effective and low cost tool that can be the hub for all the buzz your efforts are generating:  the email newsletter.

A sign up box can be easily placed on your website,  Facebook fan page and blog, garnering you the exclusive attention of interested, potential clients and a program like Constant Contact can provide professional templates and very simply functionality that will more than meet your needs.

Now all you need to do is provide these potential customers with relevant content that helps them spread the word about you and your product. Why? because these are your best clients. They are the seeds that will help  nurture your online presence  and create a conversation about your business that translates into sales.

Email newsletters are an excellent relationship building tool.  Smart marketers realize that in today’s tough economic climate customer relationships are very, very important.  People are more apt to purchase even low cost items based on a recommendation from a friend rather than a multi-million dollar ad campaign. Your newsletter can be that recommendation.

Whether you are selling soup, cars or services, your current customers can be opening the door to your future customers but you have to place them in front of the door.  Use your newsletter to outline a lucrative referral program, provide the latest industry information and to shower appreciation  rather than as an email advertisement. Use it to create your reputation exactly as you would like it to be.  Outline philanthropic efforts at your company or within affiliated associations, talk about your outstanding employees or others in your industry, answer questions that not only customers but staff and affiliates might ask and above all, make it extremely easy for your readers to share this content.

As mentioned above you need to  link to your social media accounts  in all your email communication.  You also need to place ‘forward to a friend’ links wherever possible and you need to remind your readers that you appreciate them passing your message along.

Make sure to be consistent in your efforts – monthly works best-  and you will keep the buzz going, drop the ball and the momentum you have built drops with it.

If you need help creating an email marketing campaign that is geared towards increasing your companies bottom line let me know in the comments section or email me.

Is Social Media Marketing Intimidating?

It may seem at first glance that the entire world of online marketing is a private club that only the very tech savvy can[tweetmeme source= “alisonstoodley” only_single=false] join.  If you have dipped your toe into the often murky waters of blogging, Twitter, Linked In and the like you may come away from the experience feeling that you are unqualified, or that you just don’t have the time to learn the way things work.  Both ideas are simply not true.  Blogging and social media marketing can be incredible simply.  Once these tools are explained to you it becomes easy to see how the entire social media platform works together.  Now you can understand that with a strategic plan you can manage your social media presence in less than an hour a day.  You may even want to come back to the lake and wade in up to your hips, or, dare I say, dive in?

Of course there are companies out there like mine who will manage your social media marketing for you if you can’t liberate the hour a day but regardless of who does it, make sure you are well informed because your goal should be to eventually take it over .  Not only because it will save you money but because nurturing a social media presence can put you head and shoulders above the competition by ensuring you are up to date regarding innovations in your industry.  It is an excellent networking tool that will provide qualified, interested leads,  it is a bargain compared to traditional advertising and perhaps best of all, its fun!

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